September 26, 2020

Visited by more than 15,000 – Embassy Festival is a 2020 success history

The Mayor of The Hague, The Honorable Jan van Zanen.

Bringing cultures together from all over the world and offering an experience that inspires and connects. That’s the mission of the Embassy Festival. The eighth edition couldn’t take place at the Lange Voorhout this year due to the Coronavirus, so an online edition was put together.

More than 15.000 people checked in via the festival website and hundreds of people bought an Embassy Festival Wine and/or Surprise Box. Many visited the Embassy Festival office at the Noordeinde in The Hague to pick them up and just as many were sent to addresses all over the Netherlands. By doing this, the always enticing International Market was brought to the homes of the festival visitors.

To complete the experience, a broad selection of music, cooking workshops, interviews with ambassadors, dance videos and more were published on the Embassy Festival website.
Embassy Festival Surprise Box, Wine Box and Recipe Booklet

Liquorice from Finland, desert salt from Chile, wine from Azerbaijan and more than 70 other products were selected with the participating embassies, to create a culinary round-the-world experience.

Five products from five different countries were placed in an Embassy Festival Surprise Box, together with a recipe booklet. The recipe booklet with traditional dishes from all over the world was made in cooperation with the participating embassies. “I was waiting by the door for my box and was so surprised when I opened it. I’ve been going to the Embassy Festival for years and love what they’ve created this year. My daughters want to make braided bread from Moldovia and my husbands is trying to learn Korean with one of the online videos.”, wrote online visitor Gwen Cooper.
Embassy Festival, online reactions.
Online programme

During previous editions at the Lange Voorhout, visitors would have the opportunity to see a diverse selection of dance performances, live music, theatre and an International Market where participating countries would be represented in an often-culinary way. By using the medium of video, those experiences were recreated. Cooking workshops, dance performances and interviews with ambassadors were read, shared and absorbed.
Musical contributions were sent in from all corners of the world by artists that played at the Embassy Festival previously and are now playing on stages such as the Carnegie Hall (Karsu) and North Sea Jazz Festival (Con Brio). Even the Jimi Hendrix of the Hammond organ, Lachy Doley, got his band together in Australia to treat the online Embassy Festival visitor. On Thursday 3 and Friday 4 September, an online pub quiz took place, where knowledge about the participating countries was tested. This was presented by well-known pub quiz host Mark O’Loughlin.

A worldly experience.

All videos, interviews and recordings of the pub quiz will stay available on the Embassy Festival website. Festival director Carly Dutton looks back at this edition with pride. “It’s odd to organise a festival and not being able to see how the visitors are reacting to what you’ve done.

Thankfully, we’ve received many enthusiastic messages from them. That way, we still felt the connection with our community. That’s awesome! I think we’ve managed to create a worldly experience and that we were able to send surprises to the living rooms of our visitors.”

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